The South African desalination equipment market : size, drivers and restraints

Winter, David (2007-12)

Thesis (MBA)--Stellenbosch University, 2007.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: Desalination has been hailed by some as the answer to global freshwater supply shortages, but there is rigorous debate over the appropriateness of utilising desalination technology in regions that are not faced with severe water shortages. The aim of this research report is to provide a strategic overview of the South African desalination equipment market, a region where little research on this topic has been conducted. Secondary and thorough primary research in the form of interviews with desalination equipment suppliers and end users of desalination equipment in South Africa were conducted. The research findings revealed that the South African desalination equipment market, with a total annual revenue figure of R169.80 million in 2006 is very small when compared with the annual revenue figures of other global markets such as Saudi Arabia, which reached R6.61 billion in 2006. The industrial sector is the most active end user in South Africa followed by the commercial and lastly the municipal sector. It is anticipated however that the municipal sector, driven by coastal municipalities, will experience high growth in the medium to long term. Competition levels within the market were found to be high between desalination equipment suppliers, an attribute common in growth markets. Distinct market drivers, restraints and market trends were identified by research participants each of which have a varying influence on the desalination equipment market. South Africa has a fairly active desalination equipment market, which is small by global standards, and it is unlikely that desalination will solve South Africa’s water supply issues. Impoverished citizens, the high cost of desalination and the low cost of current fresh water sources all add to the complexity of the desalination debate in South Africa.

AFRIKAANSE OPOMMING: Ontsouting word deur sommige partye gesien as die antwoord op die wêreldwye vars water voorsieningstekorte, maar daar is breedvoerige debat oor die geskiktheid van ontsouting tegnologie in streke waar daar nie ernstige waterterkort is nie. Die doel van hierdie navorsingsverslag is om ’n strategies oorsig te lewer van die Suid Afrikaanse ontsoutingsmark, ’n streek waarin daar tot dusver min navorsing oor hierdie veld gedoen is. Sekondêre en primêre navorsing in die vorm van onderhoude met ontsoutings-toerusting en eindgebruikers van hierdie toerusting in Suid Afrika is gedoen. Die bevindinge toon dat die Suid Afrikaanse ontsoutings-toerusting mark, met ’n omset van R169.8 miljoen in 2006, baie klein is wanneer dit vergelyk word met ’n mark soos Saudi Arabië, met ’n omset van R6.6 miljard in 2006. Die industriële sektor is die mees aktiewe eidgebruiker in Suid Afrika, gevolg deur die kommersiële en laastens die munisipale sektor. Dit word egter geantisipeer dat die munisipale sektor, gedryf deur kus-munisipaliteite, die grootste groei in die medium tot lang termyn gaan toon. Dei bevindeninge wys verder op hoë vlakke van kompetisie tussen ontsoutings-toerusting voorsieners, ’n algemene verskynsel in groei-markte. Verskeie mark-drywers, beperkings en tendense is deur deelnemers in die navorsing geïdentifiseer, met elk wat ’n wisselende invlied op die ontsoutings-toerusting mark het. Suid Afrika het ’n redelike klein aktiewe ontsoutings-toerusting mark in wêreld-terme en dit is onwaarskynlik dat ontsouting Suid Afrika se water-probleme sal oplos. Arm inwoners, die hoë koste van ontsouting en die huidige lae koste van vars water dra alles by tot die kompleksiteit van die ontsoutingsdebat in Suid Afrika.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/80649
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